A 41-year-old man has been put on probation and given a restraining order after admitting domestic abuse.

Alan Christopher O’Reilly repeatedly punched his girlfriend in the face, giving her a black eye.

The painter and decorator also made threats to her friends and family.

He has already spent 82 days on remand, the equivalent of a 23 week jail sentence.

Deputy High Bailiff Rachael Braidwood described O’Reilly’s behaviour as ‘insidious’ and ‘nasty’ and sentenced him to a 12 month probation order.

She told him: ‘It’s quite clear alcohol is the root, not just of these offences, but your previous convictions.

‘Not just alcohol, but cannabis use also.’

Prosecuting advocate Hazel Carroon told the court that O’Reilly was in a relationship with the complainant between April and July.

During that time he was said to have made threats to her friends and family.

O’Reilly told the woman’s stepfather: ‘I’ll put you six feet under.’

On another occasion he approached her friend and said: ‘Don’t think that I’m afraid to kill you.  I’ve killed before and I’ll do it again.’

During one row with the woman, O’Reilly repeatedly punched her in the head, causing a black eye.

The complainant bit him during the incident and he then told her: ‘Nobody can ever find out.’

They then concocted a fictitious story that she had been attacked by an unknown female.

On another occasion she was out with friends, when O’Reilly messaged her accusing her of being with other men.

When she returned home he was verbally abusive and said that he was going to set a male’s van on fire.

O’Reilly then ‘clipped’ the woman on the face, prodded her and kicked her on the calf.

He was subsequently arrested and during a search of his property, 1.5 grams of cannabis was found.

During a police interview, he denied the domestic abuse allegation, only admitting to the possession of cannabis.

O’Reilly, who lives at Main Road in Onchan, entered a basis of plea in court, in which he said the relationship had sometimes been volatile and admitted he had been verbally abusive on one occasion, and ‘flicked’ her on the face a few times.

He also said that, at the end of May, they had argued, pushing and shoving each other, and that he had hit in the face a few times, which had prompted her to bite his finger.

In court, he initially denied offences of controlling or coercive behaviour, common assault on a female, and assault causing actual bodily harm.

However, those three charges were dismissed after the prosecution offered no evidence, in light of a guilty plea to a domestic abuse offence, and possession of cannabis.

Defence advocate Ian Kermode handed in a letter of reference for his client and an apology letter from O’Reilly to the complainant.

Mr Kermode said that the defendant had only one conviction in the last nine years, and that the common denominator in his offending was intoxication through drugs or alcohol.

The advocate said: ‘Mr O’Reilly sincerely apologises in his letters.

‘He says he is doing what he can to address his issues.

‘He acknowledges he needs professional help.’

Mr Kermode went on to say that the defendant needed to work on victim awareness, to fully understand the impact on victims.

A probation report assessed O’Reilly as a medium risk of reoffending and recommended a period of probation as the most appropriate sentence.

The Deputy High Bailiff said that probation services had set out a work plan for O’Reilly, covering substance abuse, alcohol use, thought beliefs, attitude and behaviour, and intimate partner relationships.

The restraining order will run until further order is made.

He was also ordered to pay £125 prosecution costs.